Home : Arts and Health : 2010

Arts in Health Steering Group


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Kildare Arts in Health Steering Group, was established in Autumn 2008 through Kildare County Council initiative and includes artists and representatives from a variety of agencies in the health, disability, and community sectors.

Mission Statement:

Kildare Arts in Health Steering Group seeks to promote and support a diversity of quality arts initiatives within varied healthcare and community settings to enhance the health, quality of life, social wellbeing and inclusion of all citizens within County Kildare.  


To support and encourage various organisations in the promotion and use of all aspects of the arts

To support and encourage all artists within the community in the practice of their art

To raise awareness of the centrality of the arts in the enhancement of health, quality of life, social and mental wellbeing 

To promote inclusivity for all members of society through the arts

To develop mechanisms for information exchange and networking

Current Projects:

Current initiatives of Kildare Arts in Health Steering Group include the Kildare Arts in Health Mapping Project and the development of an Arts in Health Action Day in Riverbank Arts Centre, on 28 May 2010.

For further information please contact group chair, Petra Costigan Tel: 057 8625006 or Email: petra.costigan@tobe.ie

Arts in Health Exchange Day: A chance to learn, share and establish links

Over one hundred people participated in the Arts in Health Exchange Day on 28 May at Riverbank Arts Centre, Newbridge. This unique, free, one day event gave participants an opportunity to gain an understanding of the role of arts in health and how the arts is facilitated in health and care settings locally and nationally.

Dr. Fin Breatnach, CEO of Barretstown, opened the event which offered a taster of diverse arts in health activity. Featured presentations included:

  • Lakeside Storytellers and Writers, Day Hospital, Naas
  • Open Window Project, St.James’s Hospital
  • A Workshop facilitated by musicians from Music in Mental Health Programme, Waterford Healing Arts Trust
  • Arts Programme, Adelaide and Meath Hospital, Incorporating the National Children’s Hospital, Tallaght
  • A Guide to facilitating arts programmes by artist, Lucia Barnes
  • Readings by locals writers John Martin and Julie Duane
  • Performance of ‘You Wish’ by In Our Shoes Theatre Company

Participants included healthcare and social care professionals, community organisations, service providers and artists working in health and community care settings from across the county. Those in attendance found the event to be a valuable opportunity to network with others and share their work and experience. As one participant commented “The day has been open, welcoming and insightful, I have come away with some great ideas. It has been an excellent opportunity to learn about arts in health projects and it certainly got my creative juices flowing”.

To coincide with the exchange day, the Kildare Arts in Health Exhibition was held in the McKenna Gallery, Riverbank from 28 May to 3 June. Curated by local artist Dominic Thorpe, this exhibition featured twenty one works including photography, painting, ceramics and creative writing from Arts in Health projects throughout County Kildare. The works were selected from submissions made to the Kildare Arts in Health Mapping Project last January and represented projects facilitated in older person, disability, acute and mental health services.

The exhibition and exchange day was hosted by Kildare Arts in Health Steering Group with support from Kildare County Council, Riverbank Arts Centre, The Arts Council and HSE.  For further information about the group contact Petra Costigan, Group Chair, Tel: 087 2335165.

Arts in Health Exchange Day

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Arts in Health Exhibition

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